Measuring Supply and Demand for Transportation-Efficient Development
Planners and developers need a user-friendly approach or tool to measure supply and demand for transportation-efficient development. Consumers may prefer more transportation-efficient development than currently exists. Knowing that would be beneficial to help modify developer offerings and persuade reluctant government officials to modify plans and land use regulations to facilitate such development. With better information, governments would be able to influence supply and demand by providing incentives for developers. Better market information could overcome political resistance to such development. Providing a user-friendly approach to measure market preferences creates an opportunity to improve traffic demand management, livability, transportation services, investment decisions, and reduce emissions and fuel consumption.
Funding this research would provide information to combat institutional, governmental, and economic barriers to transportation-efficient development. Government, developer, and consumer decisions are incremental, but a market assessment approach could impact government and developer investments on a grand scale if it was transferable and used in many communities over a long time period.
Every year billions of dollars are invested by governments, developers, and consumers on infrastructure, community amenities and housing. If demand exceeds supply for transportation-efficient development, there are opportunities to improve health and environmental quality; reduce trip length, and reduce energy consumption, traffic congestion and emissions. Better data showing an undersupply of transportation-efficient development would make it easier to generate public and private support and implement institutional change.
Ben Orsbon, SDDOT
April 13, 2011
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